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Monday, November 07, 2011

Ward: Top 10 Reasons to Own Stocks
Guest Column by: Howard Ward

Howard Ward, chief investment officer for growth equities at Gamco Investors, spoke at the Schwab Impact conference in San Francisco on November 3 and delivered the top 10 reasons to own stocks:

Howard Ward
Gamco Investors
CIO for Growth Equities
10. $2.6 trillion in money market funds earning nothing and losing purchasing power by the day.

9. After 30 years, the bull market in bonds is over.

8. Stocks are under owned. The new alternative investment is long-only equity.

7. Stocks are driven by earnings. Despite the fact that we all feel terrible, earnings are at record levels and climbing even with 9% unemployment.

6. Inflation is a bigger long-term threat than deflation and stocks do preserve purchasing power.

5. Stocks are cheap with lowest PE ratios since 1991 when treasuries yielded 8%, and the equity risk premium is at an all-time high.

4. Sentiment is very bearish, which of course is bullish. Investors are fearful like 2009 but it is not our economy that is under assault this time.

3. With record low interest rates there is a shortage of investment income and retiring baby boomers will buy stocks for dividends.

2. Don't fight the Fed- not just our Fed. The ECB cut rates today. A new global easing cycle is beginning.

1. There will be an election in 12 months and it will be about the role of government. We will not become more like Europe. We will get our fiscal house in order and the stock market should celebrate that. 

Howard Ward is the chief investment officer for growth equities at Gamco Investors.

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